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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Since I had my Ridgeline serviced, twice now I've been going down the freeway about 75MPH and looked over to see the orange VTM-4 light on, on the left side of my dash. The VTM-4 indicator on the right hand side button is not on but the 'idiot' light on my dash panel (left side, orange) is on. On both occasions, I pulled over and tried depressing the control button a couple of times, and it would do nothing. Next to clear the light, I shut the engine off and restarted it after about 30 seconds and it seemed normal for the rest of my trip.

I've had this vehicle since 23k miles and don't recall it happening before having it serviced. I'm not trying to blame the dealer but it seems like this has only gone on since I took it in for my 30k mile service where they changed transmission fluid, differential fluid and engine oil. It doesn't have the *feel* that it's in four wheel drive but my fuel consumption seems higher so I'm inclined to think it is. It would be great if there was a control to lock it OUT of four wheel drive just as I presume the VTM-4 LOCK switch locks it INTO four wheel drive.

Anyone else experienced this?
TIA
 

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If I recall correctly, that light should only come on during startup self-test, if the lock is engaged, or if there's a over-temp on the differential.

Some things that can cause it to overheat: Old fluid, low/missing fluid, control system fault that causes the clutches to engage all the time.

Chip H.
 

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2008 Ridgeline RTS in Billet Silver Metallic
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There are a ton of reasons why the VTM-4 light can illuminate. Are you comfortable with how the VTM-4 system operates?

Simply stated, you can only manually lock the rear diff (under specific conditions), otherwise, it is fully automatic in operation and operates as the ECU determines.

A lighted VTM-4 icon indicates there's a problem detected, but it could be a related system to the VTM-4 system. A damaged wheel sensor, for instance, could cause that.

Pressing the VTM-4 lock button will do nothing until you first shift into 1,2 or R.



 

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Yeah, you probably want to review your owner's manual to get familiar with what Speed mentioned above. You can also see there what all of the different lighted indicators on your dash mean, including the various VTM-4 & VSA lights, which are good to understand.

The fact that the light is coming on AFTER you got your truck serviced, could mean that they might have used the wrong fluid in the VTM-4 unit (rear differential), or did not fill it sufficiently?

So first thing, check your invoice to see if they changed the fluid in your rear differential... and then look to see what fluid they indicate that they used (charged you for). Even if this is all correct, I'd still take it to the dealer to have them double check &/or diagnose the light.

FYI, there are a number of other causes (such as Speed pointed out) that can cause the VTM-4 light to illuminate. I mean a lot of different things can cause this. Best to get it diagnosed. But NO, the "lock" button has nothing to do with your problem.

I would join you in your suspicions, given you just had services performed.
 

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Not at all. In automatic mode (default), it will engage at any speed if the ECU detects a difference between front and rear wheel speeds.

But MANUAL lock can only be engaged intentionally. It is effective as speeds up to 18mph and will disengage above that. It will automatically re-engage if speed drops below 18 mph. But that's manual lock... which does have its uses.

Automatic operation is available at any speed if warranted.

Read here for a more complete description of how VTM-4 works.




 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks again for the replies guys. As an update on this, I went back to my local dealer and they drove it on the freeway (I'm thinking SAY WHAT?), checked fluids, reset the code from the warning light, and assured me all is good. They said the code that came up was a known problem by Honda when they looked it up and expected that there may be a solution one day. From there they told me to bring it back if I need to have the code reset again and gave me my vehicle at no charge wishing me the best. I might try another dealer one day. For whatever reason, I sensed something was up but... Sometimes it's just your imagination, right? ;-)

I'll weigh back in here with any update as an FYI for others.
 

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I think there have been a few cases of spurious warning lights that after being reset, did not re-appear. Hopefully yours is in that group.

Keep us advised please.
 

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I have to wonder if this was one of those dealerships, whose techs didn't realize that the transfer assembly on the Ridgeline does not use transmission fluid (like the older Pilots). It requires Hypoid gear oil.

Just sayin', because it has happened before.
 

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2008 Ridgeline RTS in Billet Silver Metallic
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I'd suggest to everyone to invest in a trouble code reader. (or your local parts store guy for one), they run from inexpensive to really expensive, but can give you a start. Here's the one I bought.
http://www.amazon.com/Autel-AL519-A...&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00
So as not to drift this thread, how about starting up another thread about trouble code scanners? You could put a link to your new thread in your post above.

Looks like this could be another tool for my bag... unless it simply duplicates what Torque Pro, an inexpensive OBDII BT adapter, and my Android phone can provide.
 
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